In this insightful set of essays, the concept of the psychological humanities is defined and explored. A clear rationale is provided for its necessity in the study and understanding of the individual and identity in a discipline that is largely occupied by empirical studies that report aggregated data and its analysis.
Contributors to this volume are leading scholars in theoretical psychology who believe that psychology must be about persons and their lives. In these essays, they draw from a variety of disciplines that include art, literature, life writing, and history to make a case for the psychological humanities. A final chapter provides a critical commentary on the value of the psychological humanities. It is argued that psychology must draw on the knowledge and practices of the humanities, as well as the sciences and social sciences, in order to attain a greater understanding of personhood.
This book is aimed at upper level undergraduate and postgraduate students and scholars of psychology, particularly theoretical psychology, philosophy of the mind, and those from a humanities background interested in exploring the concept of the psychological humanities.
1. Introduction to a Humanities Approach to the Psychology of Personhood
Jeff Sugarman and Jack Martin
2. The Message in the Medium: Knowing the Psychological through Art
3. Psychology as Literature: Narrative Knowing and the Project of the Psychological Humanities
4. Methods of Life Writing for a Psychology of Persons
5. Personhood through the Lens of Radical-Transformative Agency
6. Historical Ontology Exemplifying a Psychological Humanities of Personhood
7. Critical Commentary
The founders of psychology — thinkers such as Wundt, Freud, and Spencer — recognized the importance of psychologists formulating for themselves the conceptual foundations of the discipline. These parents of psychology not only did their own theorizing, in cooperation with many others; they realized the significance of constantly re-examining these theories and philosophies, including the theories and philosophies of psychology’s methods.
The Advances in Theoretical and Philosophical Psychology series is dedicated to this examining and re-examining. It identifies the pivotal and problematic non-empirical issues that face the discipline and addresses these issues in the tradition of the theorists of natural science — uncovering the implicit concepts and hidden assumptions of programs of research and strategies of practice to compare them to concepts and assumptions that might be better.